Threat Description



Aliases:Totilix, I-Worm.Totilix


Totilix is a dangerous Internet virus-worm that spreads itself with e-mail messages and overwrites all EXE files (except EMM386.EXE, SETVER.EXE and files that are currently run and are locked) in the Windows directory with its copy.


Automatic action

Once detected, the F-Secure security product will automatically disinfect the suspect file by either deleting it or renaming it.


You may wish to refer to the Support Community for further assistance. You also may also refer to General Removal Instructions for a general guide on alternative disinfection actions.

Technical Details

The worm then registers its file to be run upon each Windows startup (this is all for nothing, because the system will not be functional anyway after all EXE files are overwritten). While registering, the worm creates a new auto-run key in the system registry:

 RunAVUpdate = "worm filename"

where "worm filename" is the actual file name the worm has run from. The worm also creates an "identification" registry key:


that reports the system is already infected and there is no need to overwrite EXE files in Windows and to send infected messages.

The worm does not obtain a victim's e-mail address from the MS Outlook address book or from other files like other e-mail worms do, but it forces a user to select a victim's address himself. When starting, the worm displays a fake message:

AV Intelligent Updater
 Please select email address to send at your friend
 Select email address with 'a' only not with 'A'

Then the worm activates an e-mail client by using MAPI functions (i.e., not depending on the e-mail client brand and version), activates the Address Book menu and waits for the user to select address(es) there. After that the worm sends an infected message with its file attached to a selected address(es). The message that a recepient gets looks like that:

Hi Friend,
 This mail contains a new AV intelligent updater for all antivirus.
 To install it, execute the attachment file
 if you have any problem, send mail at

The attached worm's file name is the same of the file the worm has been activated from. Initially, the worm was received under the AVUPDATE.EXE name. The second common name is TOTILIX.EXE.

In case any error occurs while selecting an address or sending, the worm erases all files in the Windows directory, and displays one of the following "error" messages:

The recipient requested has not been or could not be resolved to a unique address list entry
 The recipient could not be resolved to any address.The recipient might not exist or might be unknown
 One or more unspecified errors occured
 The name was not resolved
 There was insufficient memory to proceed
 The operation was not supported by the messaging system
 The user was cancelled one or more dialog box

In case the worm successfully sends an infected e-mail, it disguises its action with the following message:

AV Intelligent Updater
 Internal error occured when you have launch this program
 Contact or others AV

Depending on system date and time, the worm erases files in the Windows directory and displays the following messages:

On 13th of any month, if seconds = 30
 Virus Win32.AVUpdate
 Attention, votre PC est en danger!!!!!
 Car ceci est ma veritable identite
 Veuillez contacter votre centre AV le plus proche

On 2nd of February:

Win32.Eva by Benny, (c) 1999
 Hello stupid user, i'm so sorry but i have to interrupt your work,
 Cause i hate this shitty program. Click OK to continue
 Greets to:
 Jack Qwerty/29A
 Billy Belcebu/DDT
 And many other 29 Aers...

On 9th of May:

Win32.3x3eyes coded by: Bumblee[UC]
 This is my last contribution to Ultimate Chaos team Greetings UC brothers

On 5th of April:

Virus Report rev 2.1
 SPIT.Win32 is a Bumblee Win32 Virus
 Feel the power of spain and die by the SpiT!

On 24th of September:

TOTILIX Presents...
 This >TOTILIX< Virus was assembled at the city of Oporto Portugal!
 (c) 1999 G@SP@R aka Sexus

Variant:Totilix.b (I-Worm.Totilix.b, Britney, AVUpd)

Totilix.b or Britney is a modification of the original Totilix virus-worm. On startup the worm loads KERNEL32.DLL and MAPI32.DLL libraries, gets the address of RegisterServiceProcess function, creates its startup key 'ILoveBritney' in Windows Registry:


or in case of Windows NT:


This will allow the worm to be run during all Windows sessions. Then the worm changes Internet Explorer startup page to '' and checks its 'installation check key':


If this key is not found, the worm renames SSTART.SRC to BRITNEY.SCR and starts to look for EXE files. When an EXE file is found the worm overwrites this file with its copy (except for EMM386.EXE and SETVER.EXE files). Then the worm creates the above shown key and gets addresses of MAPI-related functions. If an error occurs during this process, the worm shows a messagebox with the following error message (the caption of all worm's messageboxes is 'ILoveBritney Freeware'):

MAPI function can't found
 Please refer to help to install it

Then it deletes all files in C:\ folder and exits. Otherwise the worm displays the following message:

Please select email address to send at your friend
 This program open automaticaly your address book

When a user selects addresses from the opened Address Book to send a message, a worm tries to send a message with its copy attached to selected addresses. The infected message looks like that:

New Britney Screen Saver
 I Send you this mail to give you a new screen saver about Britney Spears.
 I hope your enjoy to have it.
 See you soon...

If an error occurs during this process, the worm shows a messagebox with one if its error messages, for example:

A error occured when i try to send email
 Please refer to your windows help for more informations

Then it tries to delete all found files and exits.

In case of a successful sending attempt, the worm displays the following message:

Thanks to have take this freeware!!!!
 Which include new screen saver about britney
 Now, send this software to your friend who like me
 If you want to email me, send at

Then the worm installs itself to memory and checks current date. If the date is 12th of February, the worm starts to continuously show messageboxes with the following text:

 It's Britney Birthday!!!!!
 You musn',27h,'t work today...

After that the worm deletes AUTOEXEC.BAT, CONFIG.SYS, IO.SYS and MSDOS.SYS files from root C:\ folder and shuts down Windows.

If the date does not match, the worm checks current time and if it is between 8:00 and 18:00, sets captions of all windows to 'Win32.ILoveBritney par ZeMacroKiller98' and starts to output the following messages in different colors on the screen:

Britney Spears is very beautiful girl!!!
 If you don',27h,'t think that, you think it now, Ha Ha Ha Ha

Because of a bug in worm's code the first message is not seen - it is replaced with the second message because the worm's author screwed up message output coordinates.

If the time is between 18:00 and 8:00, the worm displays the following message and shuts down Windows.

You can't use your PC, now!!!
 It's time to stop your computer...

The Totilix.b virus-worm can cause a heavy damage to a system that it infected by replacing EXE files with its copy or by deleting all found files. In many cases a system will become unbootable.

Technical Details: Eugene Kaspersky, KL; Alexey Podrezov, F-Secure; February 2001


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